Wednesday, October 16, 2013


To play along, just answer the following three questions ...

• What are you currently reading? W Is for Wasted by Sue Grafton. In previous "letters," we met orphaned Kinsey's relatives on her mother's side. This time around, we're introduced to the Milhones, dad's side of the family. I'm about 1/3 of the way through, and there's a pervasive sense of melancholy and danger throughout this book. Very little violence but a lot of tension. And a new character, Henry's cat Ed, is a welcome addition to the series.

Taylor snaps Burton in Mexico (1964)
• What did you recently finish reading? Furious Love: Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton and The Marriage of the Century. I read this book when it first came out (2010) and stumbled upon it again this week, letting it distract me from all those books in the TBR pile.

Forget Brangelina and Rob/KStew! I grew up on these two larger-than-life characters and their love story continues to fascinate me. Burton was a voracious reader with a photographic memory, a master story teller and an avid journal writer. He was enormously proud when a scholarly magazine asked him to write a book review. Throughout the book, Taylor is shown reading only scripts and the occasional poem given to her by Burton. (Often embarrassed by her lack of formal education, she is charmingly self deprecating when the gaps in her knowledge are exposed, tossing her head back and chirping, "But I'm a STAR!") The irony is that literary Burton died before he could fulfill his dream of writing his autobiography, whereas Taylor published four lightweight tomes in her lifetime, beginning with Nibbles and Me (1946), about her pet chipmunk.

• What do you think you’ll read next? Five Days at Memorial about the Memorial Medical Center in New Orleans and how they coped during the crisis of Katrina. I meant to be read this now, and did in fact start it, but it was too intense for my state of mind just now. I'll return to it in a few weeks.

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